Chapter 45 : A Calm Yet Turbulent Day
◆ Demon King Modes
「I’m sorry, Mona.」
「It’s alright, Modes-sama. Something of this level is not of consequence.」
I bowed to Mona, hoping my sincerity would reach her.
Thankfully, she accepted my wish easily.
By now, the female demon knight who used to be Mona’s bodyguard should’ve headed toward Lord Diehart’s residence. With this, Lord Diehart should have his subordinates as well.
My first intention was to give him a subordinate from the Chivalric Order of the Dark Knight, which was composed of males from Demonkind. But that was not possible. There were not enough knights available, because they were still rebuilding their numbers after almost being wiped out by the hero. I could not take more of them from Lord Runfeld.
I’m also considering some subordinates from lower races or orc races, but when considering Lord Diehart’s strength, I was afraid they would be more of a hindrance than of help. The only option I had left was picking those of Demonkind who could ride a wyvern.
After that, I started considering how many of Mona’s female knights I should send to Lord Diehart.
Theoretically, as long as Mona stayed in Nargol, she was in no danger.
Therefore, she did not need so many subordinates.
There shouldn’t be a problem in transferring some of her knights, but I needed to discuss that with her first. I fully expected her to hesitate in agreeing due to her dislike of Lord Diehart but, unexpectedly, she easily agreed to my wish. That was a relief.
「Of course I should grant Modes-sama’s wish.」
Mona was smiling at me so brightly it was enough to melt my heart.
I did not hesitate to embrace her.
「Please refrain from doing this… Modes-sama… We’re in a public place…」
「Nufufufufu… Don’t worry about it, it’s no big deal at all.」
The moment was ruined a bit by a voice coming from the other side of the door.
「Your Majesty, may I interrupt you for a moment?」
「What is it?」
After I allowed him inside, Rugaas bowed to me.
「Your Majesty, I have some urgent news. It’s an emergency.」
「What’s the matter, Lord Rugaas?」
「Your Majesty… Nut, who was tasked with monitoring the Hero of Light and his party, was caught by one of his women.」
Nut… He’s someone who worked well…
If he was caught, then that means he…
「Old Man Rugaas, why did you say emergency? That’s just a rat. Do you think you need to report the fate of such an insignificant being to His Majesty? Please stop wasting his time with those trivial matters.」
Mona admonished Rugaas with a cold tone.
It seems she was pissed off that he had interrupted our time together.
「Yes, it is a trivial matter, but…」
Of course, he agreed with her. Nut did not have a high social standing in Nargol, so neither Mona nor Rugaas were concerned with rescuing him.
But this Modes wouldn’t abandon those who worked for him.
「Lord Rugaas. Where is the Hero’s party right now?」
「That… They ventured inside the Minon Labyrinth.」
「WHAT!? Do you mean THAT labyrinth?」
「Yes, but I am unaware of the exact reason they did so…」
「… This is bad. That labyrinth is troublesome.」
I was very familiar with the Minon Labyrinth.
Once before, this Demon King entered that place. It was an extremely troublesome place ruled by THAT fella. Even This One had difficulty there, for others it’ll be a very dangerous place.
「Your Majesty… I think you don’t need to concern yourself with this matter. He’s just a rat, you can just abandon him.」
Despite Mona telling me to abandon Nut, I was unwilling. If possible, I wanted to save him.
However, my movements were limited due to my covenant with Oudith. Was there someone else who could save Nut other than me?
My thoughts were unconsciously redirected toward a certain man.
A certain dark Knight whose power rivaled mine.
No one but him could save Nut.
「… Looks like I have no choice but to ask for his help.」
◆ Sword Maiden, Shirone
We were heading back to the Holy Republic Lenaria after leaving the Kingdom of Algore. We still had to prepare to welcome Regena and her families.
I didn’t want to go back, but Kaya-san told me to ask for Chiyuki-san’s opinion. Recently, we had gained more information about the Kuroki situation. Also, there was still a chance to take him back since the brainwashing wasn’t yet completed.
We needed to create an opportunity to complete it.
「Kaya. Is there still no contact from my brother and the others?」
「Milady… Our contact from Reiji-sama’s side was completely cut off. I fear something has happened.」
Kaya answered Kyouka-san’s query with a troubled face.
I wanted to talk to Chiyuki-san, and yet…
What in the world happened to them?
「Hey, Kaya-san. Reiji and the others were in the Ariadina Republic, right? Let’s go there.」
「That’s right. If we are to welcome Regena and the others, we need to go to the Ariadina Republic first.」
It seemed obvious to me.
Since we couldn’t contact them using communication magic, we should just go there ourselves.
Thankfully, Kyouka-san agreed with me.
「You’re right… We have no choice but to follow them there.」
As we spoke, someone suddenly knocked on our room’s door.
「What is it? You may enter.」
After Kaya-san said so, one of Rena Temple’s female priests entered the room and bowed to us.
「Kyouka-sama, Shirone-sama, Kaya-sama. The Supreme Great Priest has summoned you」
「The Head Priest is calling us? Why?」
The one named Supreme Great Priest was the Head Priest of the temple. His status was the greatest in the faith, second only to the Goddess. The temple had a hierarchy system: Supreme Great Priest, Great Priest, Priest, and Deacon.
The Supreme Great Priest was the foremost leader of all the Temples of Rena in the entire world. That’s why he was named “Head Priest”.
This influential person had summoned us. I can only wonder… Why?
「I do not know. My orders were only to bring you to him…」
It seemed like the priestess was truly troubled by this task.
Come to think of it, the priestess should be a Deacon. The Head Priest had no reason to speak to someone with the lowest societal position in the temple.
「What could he want with us?」
「Let’s go, then.」
We were led by the priestess to a restricted room.
Only carefully selected people were allowed in here. It was the room where Chiyuki-san met the Goddess Rena.
I was unable to restrain myself in time and gawked in awe.
「This… This place is…」
「We have arrived.」
The priestess opened the door for us, bowing as she indicated that we should enter.
Once we did, the door was closed from the outside.
The one waiting for us was not who we expected to see.
「Took you long enough.」
Just the fact that the Goddess herself came here meant that, whatever she had to tell us, it was not a trivial matter. What could be so grave that she had to descend in person?
Kaya bowed in greeting and took the lead.
「What happened, Rena-sama?」
「Shirone, Kyouka, and Kaya. Please listen carefully. Reiji’s life, along with the others, might be in danger.」
「Goddess Rena… What do you mean?」
All three of us were surprised to hear that.
But Goddess Rena’s voice was very grave.
「Reiji and the others are trapped in a certain Evil God’s labyrinth in Minon Plains. We’re currently racing against time.」
◆ Prince of Algore, Omiros
「It’s still amazing, no matter how many times I look at it…」
McGyusis stared at the scenery outside of the rampart. Before us was the resting place of the Hundred Arms Giant. Originally, it had been a hill, but it had been erased during the battle and replaced by a scorched, gargantuan hole.
The hole was so big, the entire Algore Kingdom could fit it in it.
「So this was made by the Dark Knight, huh? … Such terrifying power…」
Despite the goblin and ogre raids, the Kingdom of Algore came out of such a calamity almost completely unscathed. All thanks to the preparations the Dark Knight made in advance. The Spartois that had been summoned to protect this kingdom from the goblins had disappeared.
Although I had an idea of his strength from how he defeated that Hero of Light, I did not expect that man to be so impossibly powerful. Just how powerful was he?
「Yeah, after seeing that I’m sure you couldn’t win against him. So cheer up, Omiros.」
「What are you talking about, McGyusis?」
「What I mean is: your rival is just too powerful. You need to find another wonderful woman to woo.」
McGyusis started laughing heartily.
「Those don’t sound like comforting words at all… But thank you for cheering me up, anyway.」
There was no way I could defeat an opponent as powerful as the Dark Knight. I couldn’t even protect Regena. If that man hadn’t saved her in the nick of time back then…
I’m no match for him at all.
I’m aware that he also truly cares about Regena. It’s why I’m okay with how things turned out. She wasn’t the type of woman to hide in fear, but I know he’ll protect her anyway.
Regena was in good hands, I could let her go with a light heart.
I touch the magic shield. I think he wanted to tell me to get stronger.
Suddenly, a shout pierced the air.
Rietto headed toward us… While riding on a werewolf.
That werewolf did not eat humans anymore since it had been told by the Dark Knight to protect this kingdom. Maybe that was the reason it had decided to live here.
It also visited Echigos many times while he was under medical care. Perhaps it considered Echigos a friend. Also, for some reason, that werewolf was very attached to Rietto.
「What are you two talking about?」
「The Dark Knight.」
「Ooh, that minstrel old man, huh… I didn’t expect him to be the Dark Knight.」
「Hahaha, neither did we.」
「I mean, who’d have thought the minstrel we captured was the Dark Knight without armor? Hey, maybe someday I’ll be known as “The Man Who Captured The Dark Knight, Defeater Of The Hero of Light”?」
「… Who do you think will believe that story, McGyusis?」
「Che. It’s the truth, though.」
McGyusis was frustrated with the lack of faith in him. It seemed to amuse Rietto, she was smiling at him. Then she looked at me.
「Hey, Omiros… Can we meet… That minstrel old man and… And Regena…?」
「Yup. Someday, we’ll meet them again.」
As I reassured her, I looked at the sky.
As long as we lived under the same sky, I’m sure we’ll meet again.
◆ Dark Knight, Kuroki
Kuna was happily brewing tea right in front of me.
I bet her good mood was because Regena left with her family yesterday, heading toward the Holy Republic Lenaria.
Thanks to that, the inhabitants of my mansion were reduced to just me, Kuna and the bear-faced caretaker Modes had assigned to me when he gave me this mansion.
The caretaker seemed to be a woman of the Werebear race, but I wasn’t sure. I could only see her in her “human” disguise. Maybe she had a grudge against me because I still didn’t know her name.
Unlike Kuna, the caretaker was quite sad to know Regena was moving out. I remember how she drooled whenever she saw Regena and her people. Maybe she wanted to eat them. Thinking of how the Werebear treated her, I’m glad Regena left Nargol. It was not a place for humans to live.
I felt a little lonely.
「Look, Kuroki. As long as Kuna is here, you don’t need someone like Regena to brew you tea.」
After placing the teacup in front of me, Kuna placed her hands on her hips. This position pushed out her melon-sized breasts, and they shook like pudding. Her current attire was the one Regena wore before she left, a maid outfit.
As for where that maid outfit came from… I commissioned a dwarf to make clothes for Regena and the others, and that was what he gave me. I’ve been told the dwarf had wanted to replicate the clothes worn by one of the Hero of Light’s followers.
By the way, the Werebear caretaker also wore maid clothes.
All this time, Regena had taken care of us while wearing a maid outfit.
It had troubled me whenever I looked at her.
The same maid outfit that disconcerted me so much when Regena wore it was now being worn by Kuna. The problem was… Kuna’s breasts were much, much bigger than Regena’s. Now that they were boosted by a maid outfit, they could be considered weapons of mass destruction.
I couldn’t take my eyes off them.
They looked like they’d burst through her clothing at any moment.
「What’s wrong, Kuroki? Is there something wrong with the tea?」
Kuna was looking at me with a puzzled look on her face.
Thank God. It looks like she didn’t notice how charmed I was by her chest.
「No, no. Thank you for the tea, Kuna. I’ll drink it now.」
I picked up the cup and drank the tea.
The tea was delicious and sweet. However, there was a subtle underlying flavor that I hadn’t tasted before.
[TL: It’s a TRAP!!!]
「What’s wrong, Kuroki?」
The way Kuna stared at me…
… Was she expecting some sort of reaction?
「Um, it’s delicious. I don’t think I’ve drunk this type before, what kind of tea is this?」
「Ah, I got this tea from Datie.」
It took everything I had to control the impulse I had to spit out the tea.
Datie… Did she mean Datie, the Goblin Queen?
I met Datie not long ago when I traveled to the Keron Kingdom to look for Goz. I heard from Datie that he was locked in an underground water prison for stealing. Goz had stolen an important item that Modes had entrusted to Datie.
Thus, Goz would never be able to hurt Regena again. When I told her about this, she was delighted. After all, with Goz gone she could return to human society.
Although I was also satisfied with that outcome, only one thing left me worried. While I was talking to Datie, she kept staring at my crotch as if she wanted to lick it.
It creeped me out so much that I hope I never meet her again. Ever.
Did that mean this tea was a gift from Datie?
I thought Datie and Kuna were on bad terms with each other…
「Is it delicious, Kuroki?」
What was I thinking? This was the tea Kuna had personally brewed for me. There’s no way it would taste bad.
I drank the tea to the bottom and smiled at her.
「It’s delicious, Kuna.」
「I see. Please drink again. Kuroki needs more tea because you have unbelievably powerful resistances. Kuroki is always reserved with Kuna, that’s why Kuna prepared this to accept Kuroki’s everything.」
[TL: She means their pillow talk.]
Kuna refilled my cup, but I was paying more attention to her words.
What was she talking about?
As I tried to figure out the meaning of her words, I suddenly got a bad premonition, like something bad was going to happen. There was the Ogre matter, too, but Kuna was taking care of it. She wouldn’t let them run rampant.
「Yeah, that’s right. I have a present for you, Kuna.」
I took a box from my bosom pocket and showed it to her.
「Is… That… ?」
Inside the box rested a pair of rings.
I picked up one of them and, raising Kuna’s left hand, inserted one on her ring finger.
「This ring is one half of a set. Both have been loaded with two magic spells: one, to make each wearer aware of the other’s position and two, to allow each wearer to teleport to the other’s position.」
As I speak, I show her the companion ring already on my left ring finger, just like hers.
Kuna’s eyes were already wet with tears.
「With this, we’ll be together forever.」
「Kuroki!! KUROKI!!! I LOVE YOOOUU!!」
Kuna jumped up and embraced me, crying.
「Haha, I’m glad you like my gift.」
Brushing her hair away from her face, I feel a pang of guilt in my heart.
The real reason I gave her that ring was to prevent Kuna from going wild. As long as she wore that ring, I could monitor Kuna wherever she went.
Then again, it’s not like I was going to tell her that.
Anyway… Kuna’s scent was so nice…
Someone knocked on the door as I embraced Kuna.
Kuna immediately moved away from me and shouted at the newcomer.
It looks like she’s in a bad mood from having our romantic mood interrupted… However, the one that opened the door was someone completely unexpected.
「Excuse me, my dear master.」
「Regena!? What are you doing here?」
Yup. It’s just like Kuna said.
By now, Regena should be with her family in the Holy Republic of Lenaria by using the teleportation stone she got from Shirone.
「Yes, I should have left, but… I stayed behind by myself. I have one last wish to ask of my master.」
Regena bowed her head.
Kuna’s features twisted in a displeased frown.
「What? What do you want from Kuroki?」
「My wish is… For my dear master to give me his affection.」
Regena’s eyes stared straight into mine, not even blinking.
I quickly reached out to stop Kuna, who had silently summoned her scythe.
「Affection… !? Eh- WAIT, WAIT KUNA! Keep away the scythe!!」
「Regena! YOU WANT HIS AFFECTION WITH THAT SEEDY-LOOKING BODY OF YOURS!!! KUNA IS ENOUGH FOR HIM!!!」
「Is that so? Hm… I could swear that sometimes my dear master sneaks glances at my butt…」
The tea I had been drinking was forced out in a spray from a few simple words.
She knew. I can’t believe she knew. I thought I had been subtle!
Sorry, Regena! I’m so sorry for sneaking glances at your butt while you’re bending over on your cleaning duties!
「NO! YOU CAN’T! Kuna is enough for Kuroki!! Just now, his gaze was glued to Kuna’s breasts! HE DOESN’T NEED REGENA!!!!」
… I unintentionally slipped from my chair onto the floor in despair and embarrassment.
She noticed my lewd gaze!!!!! I’m sorry, Kuna! I’m sorry for staring at your breasts!!!
「Your Excellency!! May I come in, Your Excellency?!!」
Several footsteps could be heard heading to the room we were in. The ones who just arrived were the female knights of the Demonkind, armed to their teeth. They brusquely pushed Regena aside and barged into the room.
The women bowed to me.
「We were ordered by His Majesty the Demon King to become Your Excellency’s subordinates. Please take care of us.」
Now that I thought about it… Were those the subordinates Modes was talking about before? I didn’t expect them to be a female-only team.
The Demon Race was divided into two classes: the Lower Class and the High Class.
Low-Class demons had a hideous appearance, whereas the High-Class demons had a beautiful appearance, greatly resembling the human race except for the horn on their heads. High-Class demons were so beautiful, their appearance is commonly compared to that of angels.
Each of those knights in front of me was a beauty on their own.
「Why… Why… WHY!!!」
Kuna seemed to be at her wit’s end. Maybe the increase in the number of women around me was too much of a shock to her. Then again, not even I expected that these women would become my subordinates.
They should be Mona’s subordinates.
Since they were here, Mona must have consented to the transfer of her knights to me. That is odd. I thought she hated me.
Poor Kuna looks bewildered.
My noisy days had just begun.
I drink the tea as I stare at Nargol’s sky outside my windows. For some reason, my body felt hot. The room was filled with a nice fragrance of women. So many of them in the same place at the same time…
My thoughts were becoming hazier…